Do not pass go, do not collect $200.

I have a friend who can’t catch a break. Today was his first day at Sinclair. Somehow, it also turned into a stay at the Montgomery County jail. So much for trying to start your life over.

He’s been out of prison for 6 months. He’s been in to see his parole officer every month like clockwork. He’s paying his fines, he’s paying the State for his parole (that’s right, you get charged a fee to be on post release control). He’s been working. He hasn’t been drinking. Doing all the right things.

Except, being an ex-con in America is really hard.

Every time you talk to a police officer, they get an opportunity to ask you your SSN- and run it though a computer. Today, he got into some kind of argument with someone over bumping into someone. Something really stupid. In his paranoia- and attempt to walk straight- he called campus security to let them know what had happened and that he felt threatened. Next thing you know- they are telling him he has a warrant for disorderly conduct- from 2005!

Go to jail, go directly to jail.

He gets his call. They won’t let him bond out because of his record. It’s after hours- so they can’t check with his PO about his status. No Judge will see him till 1:30 pm tomorrow.

Another day- another setback.

My question is: if there was a warrant out, and he had seen his PO at least 6 times, and she failed to act- to arrest him, to clear him- anything, what is she getting paid for? He was locked up for 3 years, they knew where he was, they’ve known where he was- and yet, here he is, on his first day in school- getting taken off campus in handcuffs.

Way to start the new year off, way to start on a new opportunity. Way to cut another scar into a life that the system hasn’t done a very good job of taking care of from the start.

Will the PO lose her job? Will the PO say she’s sorry? Will he be paid for the time he misses work? Or is incarcerated against all logic? Nope. It’s just another dumb criminal getting abused by the system.

Only this one- had a 3.98 gpa when he was in the can for that last 3 year stint. He’s trying to do his part. When will the system hold up it’s part of the deal?

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